A SHELTERED housing scheme in Bury St Edmunds is among the first to use solar panels to heat its residents’ flats under an investment by Havebury Housing.
The not for profit organisation, which has 6,000 homes under its management, has invested £200,000 installing solar panels.
These have been put in at Redwood Gardens, which provides 22 flats for elderly people, and at Churchill Close, in Clare. Havebury has also installed solar panels at its Western Way headquarters in Bury.
It is believed this eco-friendly move will reduce the organisation’s carbon emissions by 70 tonnes per year, saving £3,000. It will also receive payment from the Government’s feed in tarrif scheme.
The organisation already has other measures in place to reduce its carbon footprint through the use of cavity wall insulation, double glazing and energy efficient central heating boilers.
The solar panel scheme will last over a period of 25 years and if it proves successful Havebury will look into the possibilty of further installations at other facilities.
The organisation has also been given a £1,000 grant by St Edmundsbury Borough Council for a voltage optimiser, which further reduces electricity costs.
Michael Blackford, Havebury’s environmental procurement co-ordinator, said: “These cost savings will be passed on to the tenants through a reduced service charge, helping to reduce the burden of ever-rising electricty bills.”